HomeNewsBriefColombia Seizes First Assets Linked to Ex-FARC Mafia
BRIEF

Colombia Seizes First Assets Linked to Ex-FARC Mafia

COLOMBIA / 1 OCT 2018 BY PARKER ASMANN* EN

Authorities in Colombia have seized the first set of assets allegedly linked to a dissident ex-FARC mafia network, providing further insight into the economic standing of these dissident groups.

Colombian authorities seized assets ranging from a supermarket to commercial properties allegedly belonging to the 28th Front dissidence of the now largely demobilized Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia – FARC). The assets were located in the municipality of Paz de Ariporo in Casanare department, the Attorney General’s Office announced in a September 30 press release.

Carlos Sánchez Meza, alias "Efrén," and other leaders of the dissidence of the 28th Front -- formerly of the FARC's wealthy Eastern Bloc -- allegedly put the properties in the names of third parties to avoid detection from authorities in Paz de Ariporo. The seizure was part of an investigation into drug trafficking, extortion and other criminal activities.

SEE ALSO: Coverage of Ex-FARC Mafia

Among the nine properties seized were the La Bonanza supermarket valued at 1.5 billion pesos (around $500,000), six commercial properties within the town of Paz de Ariporo and two other rural plots of land. The total value of the properties exceeded 4 billion pesos (around $1.3 million), according to authorities.

InSight Crime Analysis

These significant seizures offer some insight into the economic power of emergent ex-FARC mafia networks.

Dissident guerrilla networks have garnered particular strength in the southern and eastern regions of Colombia, relying on million-dollar criminal economies such as drug trafficking and illegal mining to fund themselves.

While the 28th Front's assets may have been new acquisitions, dissidents in that region have also funded themselves with leftovers from the FARC's historic insurgency. As InSight Crime previously detailed in a three-part series after the FARC declared their assets to the Colombian government in 2017, millions were apparently lost to dissident rebels who deserted the peace process. Among the assets that fell into the hands of dissidents were properties in the prized Eastern Plains region -- a cocaine hub once controlled by the FARC's Eastern Bloc -- cattle worth tens of thousands of dollars, and stockpiles of weapons.

SEE ALSO: Coverage of FARC Peace

The use of supermarkets was one of many ways in which the FARC insurgency laundered its criminal proceeds. Indeed, in February this year, authorities seized 60 supermarkets and other assets tied to the FARC guerrilla group's Eastern Bloc, and which had not been declared to the government.

*This article was written with assistance from InSight Crime’s Colombian Organized Crime Observatory.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

EX-FARC MAFIA / 22 APR 2021

Reports by the Venezuelan government of landmines in Apure state, demonstrate the recent expansion of a warfare tactic used by…

COLOMBIA / 8 APR 2021

Children serve in a wide range of roles in criminal organizations: errand boy, landmine builder, frontline combatant and assassin. In…

ARGENTINA / 7 MAY 2021

The cat-and-mouse game of evading law enforcement was taken literally by drug smugglers recently in Panama, who hid cocaine on…

About InSight Crime

WORK WITH US

Open Position: Full Stack WordPress Developer

28 NOV 2022

As Full Stack WordPress Developer You Will: Work collaboratively with other developers and designers to maintain and improve organizational standards.Demonstrate a high level of attention to detail, and implement best…

THE ORGANIZATION

Join Us This #GivingTuesday in Exposing Organized Crime

24 NOV 2022

For over twelve years, InSight Crime has contributed to the global dialogue on organized crime and corruption. Our work has provided policymakers, analysts, academics, journalists, and the general public with…

THE ORGANIZATION

Like Crime, Our Coverage Knows No Borders

18 NOV 2022

The nature of global organized crime means that while InSight Crime focuses on Latin America, we also follow criminal dynamics worldwide. InSight Crime investigator Alessandro Ford covers the connections between Latin American and European…

THE ORGANIZATION

Using Data to Expose Crime

11 NOV 2022

Co-director Jeremy McDermott made a virtual presentation at a conference hosted by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). The ‘Sixth International Conference on Governance, Crime, and Justice…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime ON AIR

4 NOV 2022

InSight Crime Co-director Steven Dudley was interviewed for the podcast The Rosenberg Case: A Tale of Murder, Corruption, and Conspiracy in Guatemala, which explores the potential involvement of then president, Álvaro Colom,…